Whiz kid: Central Queensland’s top ATAR achiever revealed
Nervous and eagerly awaiting the result of an entire year’s hard work, The Rockhampton Grammar School dux Sansuka De Silva couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw his perfect ATAR score on the website.
Sansuka was one of 30 Queensland students who received a top ATAR score of 99.95.
The 18-year-old said he stayed up past midnight on Saturday and described opening the portal as “nerve wracking” because he didn’t know what score to expect.
He said he was very happy and elated to share his score with his family, who helped him through this unprecedented year.
“My family were all so happy for me and have offered me so much support over the last few years, especially this year with everything that has happened,” he said.
“It’s been crazy. When we were told we would have to go online for a bit it was weird for us being our final year of school and we won’t even be in class.
“I knew this year would be a big year for me because I was the school vice-captain and with all my extra-curricular activities it was going to be a tough year, and this was another to add.
“But the staff did so much for us, and I feel like our whole cohort got together and worked with each other to really achieve the best we could.
“I wouldn’t be in this place without my family, friends and all the staff at The Rockhampton Grammar School.”
Sansuka was born in Singapore and lived there for about four years before moving to Brisbane, where he spent most of his childhood.
When he started Year 4, his family moved to Rockhampton.
He said that same year he suffered a throat problem and noted there were no doctors in the region who were able to help him.
He said he hoped to study medicine at either Monash University in Melbourne or at the University of New South Wales and return to Rockhampton to work as a geneticist.
He said he wanted to return to the region after studying at university because of his childhood experiences.
“Having that throat problem and no doctors here to solve my issue has really motivated me to want to come back to Rockhampton,” he said.
“I love living here in Rockhampton, it’s a wonderful place to get to know the community and really leave a mark.
“I would love to come back and work here, as well as lots of other regional and rural communities.”
Sansuka said the key to succeeding in his final year of high school education was balance.
“Studying can be counter-productive,” he said.
“I love music, I love playing piano, debating, public speaking and being the school vice-captain, and it was finding that balance of studying and doing the things I loved that helped me get through the year.
“For example, when I was stressed, I would play the piano and sing songs for my family and that really helped me calm down with everything that was going on this year.”
Having completed all his interviews, Sansuka will now have to wait until January to find out if he has made it into the university of his choice.
Rockhampton Girls Grammar School reported achieving seven per cent above the state average for QCE attainment and close to a quarter of its students receiving ATARs over 90.
School dux Chloe Cowan achieved an ATAR above 99, which was close to a perfect score.
“Good luck on your journey into medicine next year,” the school posted to its Facebook page.
The Cathedral College student Isabella Arthur also received a 99.15.
If you would like to share your or a friend’s ATAR achievements with us, we’d love to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org